The PlayStation 5 Dualsense controller has profoundly impacted how I experience games. From the subtle haptic feedback that makes you feel like you are walking through a rainstorm to the epic active triggers that pulse with energy, the controller has never been more deserving of the “it’s a game-changer” cliché. However, the Dualsense has one major drawback.
All this technology means that the battery life of the Dualsense is incredibly short. If you play a game of Grand Tourismo with the active triggers purring along with the motors and the haptics bumping and pumping at every divot and dip, the battery will drain in just a few hours.
This got me thinking: would it be possible to continue playing my game while charging my PS5 controller with my phone charger? Excited by this prospect, I dug out all the phone chargers in the house and experimented. Here is what I found:
Can you charge the PS5 controller with a cell phone charger? Yes, you can charge the PS5 Dualsense controller with a cell phone charger. The cell phone charger must be set to at least 5 volts and 1.2 amps to charge the PS5 controller at the same rate as the PS5 console. The PS5 controller is not capable of fast charging.
In the following sections, I’ll talk about:
- How to charge the PS5 controller with a cell phone charger.
- Is it safe to charge a PS5 controller cell phone charger?
- The ideal amperage and voltage to charge a PS5 controller.
- Is a fast charger better for the PS5 controller?
- Do you need to fully charge a PS5 controller to use it?
- Can you use a PS5 controller while charging from a cell phone charger?
That’s a lot of questions to answer regarding charging the PS5 Dualsense controller with a cell phone charger. Let’s crack on with answer the first question.
How to charge the PS5 controller with a cell phone charger
Charging a PS5 controller with a cell phone charger is pretty simple. It’s similar to charging your cell phone with your phone charger. Below is a complete method, including what you need to charge your Playstation 5 controllers.
What you need (Links lead to Amazon products):
Step 1: Plug the cell phone charger into the power outlet.
The first step is to plug the phone charger into the wall outlet. You can also plug the charger into a multi-plug outlet and extend it to where you are sitting. I use a 3-plug extension cord that is 15 feet long, so the charger is right next to my gaming seat and easily accessible. Once the phone charger is securely plugged in, you can move on to the next step.
Remember that your charger supports either USB-A or USB-C or even both. If your charger has a USB-C port, you’ll need a USB-C to USB-C cable. This is because the PS5 controller has a USB-C port for charging.
If your phone charger has a USB-A charging port, you’ll need a USB-A to USB-C cable.
Step 2: Connect the USB cable to the PS5 controller.
The second step is to plug the USB-C end of the cable you will use to charge the PS5 controller into the PS5 controller’s charging port.
Make sure you use a cable compatible with both your PS5 controller (USB-C) and your phone charger (USB-C or USB-A).
Step 3: Plug the cable into the charger to start charging.
Next, you should plug the other end of the USB cable into the phone charger plug.
Again, make sure you have the correct socket on your charger’s plug so that it matches the free end of the charger you are using.
Step 4: Wait for the controller to charge.
The fourth step is to wait until the PS5 controller’s battery is 100% charged. The PS5’s main menu will show 100% when the controller is fully charged. You can check the progress of charging to 100% by the battery icon at the bottom right of the screen.
And that’s it. That’s how you can charge your PS5 controller with your phone charger. Just ensure you have a compatible USB-C to USB-C or USB-C to USB-A cable.
Next, I’ll look at the ideal voltage and amperage to charge your PS5 controller.
Ideal voltage and amperage to charge PS5 controller with a phone charger.
In the last section, I explained how to charge your PS5 controller with your phone charger. In this section, I’d like to look at the technical side of charging the controller, namely the voltage and amperage needed for optimal charging of the controller.
The best voltage for a phone charger to charge the PS5 controller is 5V.
To charge the PS5 controller, you need a charger with a voltage of 5V or higher. Anything less than that will not charge your controller or, at most, charge it very slowly.
Like most modern electronic devices that charge lithium-ion batteries, the Dualsense PS5 controller has several safeguards to ensure that it does not overcharge or charge too quickly. I’ll get into whether you can use a fast charger with the PS5 controller later in this article, but for now, suffice it to say that using a higher voltage charger will not damage the PS5 controller.
Now let us talk about the amperage.
The PS5 controller can draw a maximum of 1.5 amps when charging. This amperage drops when the battery exceeds the 80% charged threshold and the charging speed drops. The faster you charge Li-Ion batteries, the faster they wear out. So, by charging slowly, you extend the life of the batteries.
In general, try to use a cell phone charger that meets or exceeds 1.5 amps at 5 volts. You won’t have a problem if you use a charger with higher amperage or voltage ratings. However, if you use a cell phone charger with less than 1.5 or 5 volts, the cell phone will charge very slowly, if at all.
In the next section, I will address whether or not it is safe to charge the PS5 controller with a cell phone charger.
Is charging a PS5 Dualsense controller with a cell phone charger safe?
In the previous section, I mentioned that the PS5 controller has several protections to prevent charging too quickly or overcharging.
So in this section, I would like to address all the safety issues regarding the PS5 controller and charging it with a cell phone charger.
I guess I should first say that the PS5 Dualsense controller is completely safe to charge with any cell phone charger or another USB charger.
The PS5 controller has a small microchip inside that acts like a little brain that controls the controllers charge. When you plug a charger into the PS5 controller, the microchip knows how much current is flowing into the controller. As the controller’s battery fills with power, the current in the battery begins to push-back against the current flowing into the battery. This usually happens around the 80% mark. The microchip detects this push-back and evaluates it as a signal to reduce the amount of current flowing into the battery.
From this point on, the microchip brain in the Dualsense controller slowly slows the flow of current into the battery as it approaches 100%.
Regardless of what charger you use, the microchip in the controller will not allow the controller to charge faster. But this microchip can do much more. For example, the chip does not open the controller to a higher current flow per second than it’s supposed to. So the controller can only ever charge at a maximum of 1.5 amps and 5 volts.
Once the controller is 100% charged, it will not be able to charge any further. The microchip cuts off power to the minimum levels needed to keep the controller at 100%.
If you use the controller when it is 100% charged, it stays at 100% because the microchip switches to USB power instead of battery power.
So the controller you hold in your hand is very smart, and that makes charging very safe regardless of what charger you use.
I’ll explore whether fast chargers can be used effectively with the PS5 controller in the next section.
Is a faster charger better for the PS5 controller?
In the last section, I looked at whether various USB chargers are safe for use with the PS5 controller, and we concluded that the PS5 controller is very safe because of the built-in charging microchip that controls amps and volts. But does this safety affect the PS5 controller’s ability to charge quickly?
Yes, it does. The PS5 controller is not capable of fast charging. Fast charging does not work since the PS5 controller is limited by the microchip charge controller to a hard upper limit of 1.5 amps and 5 volts.
Some fast chargers can charge at speeds well over 20 volts, four times faster than the PS5 controller’s charging speed.
Still, Sony has made a conscious decision to deny the controller the use of fast chargers. Why is that?
The reason is quite simple: The faster you charge a Li-Ion battery, the faster it deteriorates.
In general, you can expect a controller like the PS5 Dualsense to be charged 500 times before its battery capacity drops to 80% of its original maximum charge.
However, if you were to charge the PS5 controller with a fast charger every time, the battery would degrade much faster. The battery capacity would drop to 80% after 150 charges if each charge was done with a fast charger.
The reason why fast chargers damage Li-Ion batteries is because the current is forced into the battery. The force breaks down the chemicals used in the battery. And the faster and stronger the current enters the battery, the faster the chemicals are broken down.
Think of charging a battery like filling a swimming pool. If you fill a pool with a regular hose, the pool fills slowly, but no damage is done. You could fill the pool thousands of times this way. Now imagine trying to fill the pool with a fire hose, using all the power of the water. After filling the pool once, you might not notice any problems. After 10 fills, some titles might be missing. After 100 fills, a whole side of the pool might have collapsed.
As you can see, while fast charging has advantages, it also has massive disadvantages when it comes to shortening the useful life of a controller like the Dualsense.
In the next section, I’ll look at whether or not you need to fully charge a PS5 controller before using it.
Do you need to fully charge a PS5 controller with the phone charger to use it?
In the last section, I looked at whether or not you can fast charge the controller, and unfortunately, you can not. So if you can not charge it quickly, you may only be able to partially charge the controller before you want to use it again.
So can you use the controller while it is partially charged?
Yes, you can. Whether the controller’s charge level is 10%, 50%, or 90%, you can take it off the charger and use it immediately.
If you charge the controller to at least 20%, you should be able to play for at least an hour. However, ensure that the controller’s charge level is above 20%. I say this because the last 10% of Li-Ion battery power tends to discharge very quickly.
So you can play with the controller even if it is only partially charged via the phone charger. That brings me to the last section of the article: can you keep playing while your controller is charging via the phone charger? Let’s take a look…
Can you use the PS5 controller while charging on a cell phone charger?
In the last section I looked at whether you can could play with a controller that’s partially charged. And this bring logically onto the next point: Can you use the controller while it is charging?
You can continue playing games while your Dualsense is connected to a phone charger without any problems.
Just be aware that the controller will charge slower since most of the power is used for controller functions while you are using it.
Just make sure you have a long USB cable(Amazon Link) that will reach the plug of your phone charger.
Or use a multi-plug with a long cable(Amazon Link) and place it near your gaming seat.
So, yes, you can use your controller while it’s charging from your phone charger. In the last section, I will briefly summarize the article’s main points.
We have covered many important points in this article about charging your Playstation 5 Dualsense controller with your phone charger. I will summarize them in bullet points below.
- Yes, you can charge your PS5 controller with your phone charger.
- The phone charger should be 5V and 1.5 amps or more.
- Using a charger with less than 5V and 1.5 amps will charge the controller very slowly or not at all.
- Fast chargers will not work with the Dualsense. However, they are safe to use and will not damage your controller.
- You can also use the controller partially charged.
- You can use the controller while charging it with your phone charger.
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